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needing to step down...

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I have decided to step down from my current position as Treas. of our local troop. I was the Cubmaster, a trainer for district, and membership chair for our district as well. I also have done things for council as well (daycamp, etc.).


I have step down little by little from each job because of all that I am doing with my family. We have four children and one on the way. We home school and are active in our local church. I sent a email to our small council to notify them that I would be leaving Scouts all together. They asked me to stay on at the district level to maintain my "years in Scouting". This council level person has already asked me to help train a new unit in the same email from him that I recievced with a reply from my resignation letter.


My job would be to help behind the scenes with membership as a committee member. The district chair told me that he understood how much my time was limited but the council folks are trying to get me to do more than I can. I told everyone that I have been working with that I'm burnt out and just want to be a parent for a while. We currently have two boys in Boy Scouts and two more younger boys coming along. We are going to be in Scouting for a very long time:)


I'm afraid to say yes to our council and district because of how it would look to everyone else. I know that they seem to believe that I am a push over when it comes to Scouts. I really need a break but am willing to do things very behind the scenes but I got the feeling that it won't happen the way I would want it to. What should I do?

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Of course only you and your spouse can make the decision.


But what I hear from you is you need a break and from what you say regarding the number of children you have and one on the way - your family needs you more right now. As the kids grow and become more involved you can get reinvolved with them at some level comfortable for you.


Like all organizations those in charge go to the people who are the easiest sell and always say yes when asked to help (80/20 rule). It is only natural. But to me now is your time to say "sorry, but I am not available, I need to spend more time with my family."


That's what you should do - OK I don't really know what you should do, but you asked.


Best to you whatever you and your beloved decide.



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You need to understand that District and Council professionals (and volunteers) are trained not to take "no" for an answer. The reply, "OK, then you can just be the District Membership chair" is akin to the "It's only one hour a week" lie. (If I understood your post correctly).



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No is no is no is no.


I was waaaaay over-involved, too. When I decided to step back some, they (local, district, & council)didn't seem to be able to understand "no", either. The hardest to get to understand "I need some breathing space" was District. When I told them I wished to resign as District Training Chair, first they didn't want to accept my resignation. Then they said, "Okay, but we want you to step into another position that is only one "time period" per year." I found out that was Friends of Scouting District Chair. Whoa! That time period only covers the one time period of what...January to November? I queried if they didn't understand what I was telling them. I had to put it in writing, including that I was not accepting any other positions, and that effective immediately I was not scheduling not putting on any more trainings.


Ultimately the decision is for your family to make. But regardless of how much we like and appreciate it, Scouting can suck the enthusiasm right out of you if you allow it, and that isn't fair to your family. Be strong. It isn't a small job to help get a new unit going...you will be committing a lot of time!


Best wishes...Ma

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You have to do what you think is right. If you feel you need to step back for awhile, then by all means do it. Maybe you will be able to come back again in some capacity once you have had a break. Pushing yourself now beyond what you are willing to do benefits no one. Good luck in your decision.

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  • 3 months later...

Volunteers in the BSA are just that, volunteers. You have the right to leave anytime you want and that is it, period. You have no obligation to submit a resignation either verbally or in writing (although that is probably the ethical or "correct" thing to do. If your resignation is not accepted, and you still want to leave, just leave. Of course all of this is just my opinion. But if I wanted to leave a volunteer position, I would do it.

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I am quite possibly going to be starting seminary in January - when I told the pastor responsible for admissions that I couldn't start in September because I had to scale back my BSA commitments first, her reply was, "Oh, Boy Scouts, I was involved with that. They ask for more commitment than parishioners."


Just for a little bit of perspective.



a good ol'Bear, too!

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Having been a District Chairman.

Please believe me finding good people to work for the District is not easy.

I think looking back I seen the loss of a volunteer much the same as I seen a Scout quitting Scouting. - I wasn't going to give up without a fight.

I have never counted the stages of "The Loss"

Of course there is always the "Thank Goodness he is gone" which of course meant that I'd selected the wrong person to start with!!

So if nothing else you can think yourself lucky that you weren't one of them!!

Then there was the "I'll have a chat with him" Stage.

If that didn't work I moved on to the "I'll find him something that he might enjoy more" Stage.

If that failed I moved to the "Give him a little time" stage. (Then back to have a little chat and more offers of other roles/jobs)

By now I'm ready to admit defeat, in fact I'm beaten, but all is not lost!! Now is the time to see if the District Commissioner can recruit a new Commissioner!!

Word that a gifted volunteer is foot loose and "under-employed" can spread like wild fire!! Council Chairpersons need help so they start sniffing around (DE's often offer them a little help.)

Saying No can be very hard.

Heck my job was to prevent you from saying NO!!

While the great fear is that if you take a break, you might enjoy it and decide that you are never coming back!!

A lot of people didn't believe that I was going back to become a unit Scouter and really was turning my back on the Council and the District!! But I'm having a ball and really enjoying being back with the youth members.

You have to do what you want to do!!

Burnout can and does happen.

Sadly when someone really does get burnt-out, they rarely ever want to return.

You have to follow your heart.

The very best in whatever you decide.


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Hey everyone!


I didn't think that my post would still being read. A lot has happened since May. I did turn down the "council" but the good news is that I know that I will be back someday. We found out that the baby I am caring is a little girl. Her sister is very happy. But when it comes to BSA we still have one more to go thru with. My husband went to summer camp this year for the first time. My husband is not a big fan of Scouts(bad experiences as a Cub Scout) but went because he wanted to spend time with our two older boys. He got that Scouting bug and thinks he wants to start helping out. Maybe a Assistant Scoutmaster, etc. We are finishing up building our new house, President of Rotary Club(term doesn't end until 6/30/07) and having a new baby next month. I told him baby steps so that he doesn't get "burn out" too. I will start back in Cub Scouts 9/2010 if not before. What is finally happening with my husband is what I wanted in the first place. He does a better job of saying "NO" when he needs to and that is a problem for me but I'm a work in progress. I know that I want find a way to keep doing Scouts in some way but haven't found what that place is yet. I am taking a year of as of July 2006 to see where life takes me and my family. Wish us all luck and remember that our Councils aren't the BAD guy but they are the driving force behind all of us. I have to agree with Eamonn:)

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